Thursday, October 13, 2011

The Richt - Grantham "Incident"

It's interesting how two people can watch the same scenario yet come away with very different interpretations of what happened.  I've seen a lot of hub-bub about the "incident" Saturday night that was caught by the TV crew where Richt was walking over to take a timeout, and Grantham physically stopped Richt as he walked in front of him.  Or as this Bleacher Report article says:

My only concern with Grantham is that he may be a little too aggressive in his attitude, not on the field, but on the sideline.  You see glimpses of it if you pay attention and it may start a rift between the two.
In Saturday’s game against Tennessee there was one point where Coach Grantham was studying the field and Richt was trying to go in front of him to get to the referee.  Grantham pushed him to the side while he studied the field, and then let him pass.  That could cause a head coach to get a little miffed.  Hopefully Richt let it go.  I really hope that it does not become an issue because I like what he brings to this team and I think he’ll be very successful here.

It was also brought up in Seth's mailbag yesterday where one person asked:

Seth, I'm really liking what I see out of Grantham's defense, but I am concerned that he and Richt may not be jelling well.  If you saw the sideline shot where Grantham pushed him back while Richt was trying to get to the ref, that could get under a coaches skin.  Have you noticed anything like that as you get to see them working together a lot more than the average fan?
I've seen it referenced in several other places where people are concerned that Grantham was out of line and it may cause problems with Richt. 

Well, as I referenced above, I saw the same incident, but came away with a completely different interpretation (I couldn't find a clip of it, but I'm at Disney World right now so also didn't put a whole lot of effort into looking).  It was a key third down situation where we really wanted to come up with a stop (we did stop them on that play, by the way, though they converted the 4th down).  Richt was walking over to the official to take a timeout so we could make sure we had the right defensive call ready to go.  As Richt walked in front of him, yes Grantham did physically stop him, but you could read his lips, he was saying "Wait, Wait", and he was intently scanning the field.  It was clear to me that before the timeout was taken, Grantham just wanted Richt to wait long enough for him to see the personnel grouping and formation before the timeout was called.  As soon as he saw what he wanted to see, again you could read his lips and he said "OK" and broke away to go get ready to huddle with the defense.  I got the sense that Richt totally knew what Grantham was doing, and surely he couldn't have disagreed with Grantham wanting to gain as much info as possible before deciding on the defensive playcall.  I didn't see anything that in my mind would offend Richt or think Grantham had overstepped his bounds.

Could Grantham have been slightly less animated in how he was asking Richt to wait a minute before calling the timeout?  Of course.  But I'm pretty sure that Richt knew he was getting a very lively coach when he hired Grantham.  Nothing that I saw came across to me as disrespectful towards Richt or anything that would indicate some sort of problem between the two.  Grantham wasn't trying to push Richt because he was getting in Grantham's way or anything like that, he was just trying to make sure Richt held off on calling the timeout long enough for Tennessee to line up, giving him the info that he needed. 

What did you guys think?  Did you interpret it like I did, or that Grantham was out of line?


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